Ubuntu 11.04, Ubuntu 11.10, Ubuntu 12.04
1. Log in to Unity, and try to connect to a server: "File" > "Connect to Server".
2. Launch Firefox, and try to select an item from the "Bookmarks" menu.
1. The "File" menu, and the rest of Nautilus's menus, are hidden by default.
- Unless you mouse over it, the menu bar is blank.
- When you mouse over it, the menus appear.
2. The "Bookmarks" menu, and the rest of Firefox's menus, are hidden by default.
- Unless you mouse over it, the menu bar contains only the text "Firefox Web Browser", which isn't useful at all (especially, but not only, since the real name of the application -- "Mozilla Firefox" -- is already present in the window title bar).
- When you mouse over it, the menus appear, partly but not completely replacing the previous text: "Firefox W File Edit View…".
What should happen: Menus should be visible by default, so that you can know that they exist without scrubbing the screen, and so that you can see where a menu is each time you aim for it.
The current behavior has led some people (including, this week, one of my design colleagues) to conclude that Ubuntu applications don't have menus when they do. For example <http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/opensource/gnome-shell-vs-ubuntu-unity-which-desktop-wins/2291>: "One of the most handy menu entries in GNOME (for me at least) is the Connect to Server entry in the Places menu. This allows the user to connect to nearly any type of server quickly and easily. The user can even connect to a Windows Share from here. In Unity - you won’t find that. In fact, you will be hard pressed to find any means to connect to a server in Ubuntu Unity."
In bug 720424, Jono Bacon reported that "when we did some developer tools usability testing last week and on some other occasions when I have had someone use Unity, I have noticed that some folks don't realize there is a menu there as it is not visible."
This was confirmed by usability testing of Ubuntu 11.04, where 2 out of the 10 people who needed to use a menu item could not find the menus at all -- and of the 8 who did find them, 7 did so only when the window was maximized. https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-desktop/2011-April/002970.html (Usability testing results of Ubuntu 11.10 or 12.04 have never been published, but this part of the design did not change.)
Do not confuse this bug with bug 682788, which is about adding an option for visibility. Adding any options would not fix this bug, which is about menus being hidden *by default*.
Implement the 'Enhanced Menu' project for 12.10. This project will address the issues described in this bug and also issues described in the duplicates of this bus. Note the 'official' bug that tracks the implementation of this project is bug #682788
The following options will be added to 'System Settings/Appearance':
Visibility: Hidden/Always displayed
More details to follow during the 12.10 cycle... ;-)